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Monday, January 28, 2013

"If you can't dazzle them with brilliance...

baffle them with bullshit!"  W.C. Fields

We were certainly not dazzled by Ms. Romano's explanation of the $100,000 "surplus" that she claims can be found on page 3 of the 2010-2011 compiled financial statements.

According to Ms. Romano in her guest editorial [referring to a copy of the New Hartford Public Library's 2010-2011 Financials]:
Assuming the editorial board did not receive a copy from its reporter, I have provided a copy of the certified financial statements to each member. The fund balance is clearly disclosed on page 3 under Net Assets, Unrestricted: Board Designated $98,243.
It is suspect as to whether or not Ms. Romano even knows what Unrestricted Board Designated Assets are...let alone what restrictions the library board apparently placed on the funds some time ago and how the fund is to be managed.  It's clear that she has no idea of what certified financial statements are or is she merely trying to baffle with b/s?

Let's start with an explanation of Unrestricted Board Designated Assets...they are monies that the board has, presumably by board resolution, set aside for an intended purpose. They are considered unrestricted because, as easily as a board can designate a special purpose for unrestricted net assets by board resolution, it can “undesignate” those net assets by board resolution.

These funds are in contrast to temporarily restricted or permanently restricted net assets where restrictions have been placed on the use of the assets by donors or grantors external to the library. In the case of temporarily restricted net assets, the assets must remain restricted until the restriction has been satisfied. We will get back to permanently restricted assets at a later date. There definitely is a story to be told yet!

One should be able to find the purpose of board designated funds in the footnotes to financial statements. However, as we have already reported, since the year ending December 31, 2009, the first year that Daniel T. Dreimiller, CPA P.C. was hired to perform a compilation for the library, the financials (compilation) no longer include footnotes.

We have no idea why or who authorized Mr. Dreimiller to leave the footnotes out...his letter merely states that:
"Management has elected to omit substantially all the footnote disclosures required by accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America".
There has never been a discussion at the board table that we have ever seen or read about in old board minutes. There has never been a Finance/Audit Committee meeting called since at least 2010 so it couldn't have been by a vote of the Finance/Audit Committee. So who is "Management" and why haven't the footnotes at least been presented to the library board of trustees for discussion? Footnotes are a critical part of financials and are needed to fully understand the library's financial picture.

To gain a better understanding of the various funds, we reviewed the last financial statement that did contain footnotes, the 2007-2008 Financial Statements prepared by Gruver, Zweifel & Scott, LLP.

Under Footnote #6 A of the library's 2008 Financials found on page 8 of the financials, we find out the intended use for these board designated monies:
The Library's board has designated unrestricted net assets to be used toward building improvements. At December 31, 2008 and 2007, designated net assets for building purposes was $94,500.
Aha...the board didn't set the money aside to cover budgetary shortfalls, in other words, to create a "rainy day" fund; they actually set the money aside for building improvements. Therefore, the only way those funds can be used for other than building improvements is by board resolution.

No such board resolution was entertained, either PRIOR TO or AFTER Earl Cunningham's report to the board at the January 9, 2013 library board meeting, authorizing a transfer of money out of the board designated fund to be used to cover a budgetary shortfall of $10,000.

Furthermore, if you listen to the video in our January 10, 2013 blog, Mr. Wiatr clearly asked Treasurer Earl Cunningham if he was referring to the building fund and Mr. Cunningham replied, "NO".

Therefore, a reasonable person with a modicum of accounting experience could draw no other conclusion than the fact that there is either another "surplus fund" held by the library other than the board designated fund that appears on the financials...or, this library desperately needs someone in charge that knows what they are doing.

If we recall correctly, Mr. Cunningham himself even called the $100,000 a "surplus fund"; not a board designated fund. The board designated fund is only a surplus by virtue of the board, by resolution, changing the intended purpose for some or all the money held in the fund. We challenge Ms. Romano, Earl Cunningham or any other trustee for that matter to produce a resolution changing the purpose of the board designated fund so that it can be used to offset budget deficits.

Since Supervisor Tyksinski stated that he was aware of the surplus fund, was he aware that it was set aside for a specific purpose? Certainly, as a CPA, Supervisor Tyksinski should know what a board designated fund is...or was he only covering for Ms. Romano and Earl Cunningham? And why, oh why, did Supervisor Tyksinski make a deal with Earl Cunningham to give the library an extra $50,000 of sales tax that should have been used to reduce town taxes...if he indeed knew there was a $100,000 surplus fund?

This library board is in the habit of making contradictory statements every time a question is asked and then they blame everyone else for what they deem to be "unsubstantiated opinions". They seem to believe..THEY are not the ones that are wrong, it's the rest of the world!

On another note, we were equally not dazzled by Library Tortoise, the library employee turned blogger. He put another blog online today. We could write another blog dedicated to the foolish writings of this blogger, but we have already given him his fifteen (15) minutes of fame [fifteen (15) minutes more than his blog deserves], so this time we are posting what he wrote as a pdf with some of his most incredulous blather highlighted in yellow. This employee has overstepped his bounds and he has absolutely no idea what he is talking about. Yet the library board allows him to babble on and on, literally biting the hand that feeds the library.

One of his comments...
There is no doubt that the Library's book keeping methods are basic but apparently, Mr. Wiatr cannot tell the difference between his former employer the Department of Defense and a smallish town library.
He actually admits that the library's bookkeeping methods are inadequate and then calls the library "smallish". Smallish? So a "smallish" library needs a million dollars to operate? Please!

By the way, Mr. Wiatr is still gainfully employed...get your facts straight!

One last thing, this library employee keeps insisting that Mr. Wiatr writes this blog. We are saying for one last time that Mr. Wiatr not only does not write this blog, he has absolutely nothing to do with its contents.

Library Tortoise needs to crawl back under his shell and thank his lucky stars that he is still gainfully employed at the library.

Here is his latest blah, blah, blah...


Anonymous said...

The question remains ...what did Tyksinski know and when did he know it?

Anonymous said...

1. On October 31, 2011, Library Director Hans Plembeck emailed you and stated that he secretly videoed a library patron and that the library patron was unaware that he was being videoed. Question: Is policy for Library employees to secretly video library patrons in the library? Has anyone been videoed, like our children? What actions have you taken as the library president?
2. Your Library Director of Technology, Roy Senn has a blog an in it he says on one hand that the "Library books" are open to all but in the same post he stated that Trustee Waitr was given a “box of records”. So Mr Senn, also said that the Library’s financial records are NOT in a searchable, electronic spreadsheet. Question: Are the records in a folder or in a box? If there’re in a folder, why was Mr Waitr given a box of records to sort through? And why, in the second decade of the 21st Century, is the library using a paper spreadsheet instead of Excell on a computer?
3. On the New Harford On Line Blog, (found here ) The Town Board liaison to the library, Town Councilman Don Backman, has written a scathing public reponse to your OD guest editorial. It seems like you have burned your bridges with the town board. How do you respond to Mr. Backman?
4. On May 4, 2012 in an email between you and Virginia Emmert, former NHPL trustee and board secretary, Ms Emmert said in part: Tim's million dollar budget, I cannot help but feel that many in the community would be outraged at that figure. I know he feels that if we justify that amount, they will be happy to vote for it. Maybe I will feel different when I see what a million dollars will offer to the community but at this point, I feel it is excessive."
You, Ms Romano, in response to Ms. Emmert that $1,000,000 was too much but you were going to ask for it anyway. Question: Why, in these challenging economic times, do you want to impose a $1,000,000 tax on the hard working taxpayers of New Hartford?
5. Given all of the problems of the library under your leadership such as:
-the failure of the chartering vote,
- the failure of the Library Trustee board to give the Town board a working budget,
-the failure to public disclose the $100,000 surplus,
- the loss of support within the NH Town Board
-The bizarre behavior, Ect
Why are you still the President of the Library Board of Trustee? Do you really believe that you, and only you in all of New Hartford, are capable of leading this institution that belongs to the people and is not your personal property?
All of New Hartford is looking forward to your answers

Anonymous said...

Hey Bolton,

It's time for you to step up to the plate. Oh, I forgot your help with the care packs to our troops. You did NOTHING and should be ashamed of yourself. It's easy to complain but time consuming to help.

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Anonymous.
This is Mr. Bolton, who you have referenced in the above email.
First of all, I want to thank you for the public recognition that my questions pertaining to the library have your attention. Hopefully, this will lead to specific answers from Library President Linda Romano.

As for your comment on the packages for the troops, I have no idea what you are talking about. However, since you imply that I do not do enough for my community I thought I would enlighten you on what I have been doing.

I did 25 years of service to my country in the Army to include a yearlong deployment to Kuwait and a yearlong deployment in combat in Afghanistan. Since retirement, I have worked with the young people of New Hartford for six years as a Confirmation teacher at Saint John the Evangelist Church and I have been a guest lecturer at New Hartford High School and at the New York Civil Air Patrol. I also serve as Congressman Hanna's Chairman on the Academy Service Selection Committee. I do all of that despite a job at the Rome Lab that puts me on the road as often as 2 weeks of every month.

Furthermore, I am sure you will be pleased to know that I have submitted my name to the New Hartford Town Board for appointment as a New Hartford Library Trustee. Since you believe I am not doing enough, I am sure you will contact the Town Board in support of my appointment.

Please let me know what else I can do for my community or country and thank you again for your comment.


Joseph Bolton

Anonymous said...

Sorry but you lose. Apparently the TB must think you don't have the tools.

New Hartford, NY Online said...

Anonymous said...
Sorry but you lose. Apparently the TB must think you don't have the tools.

So sorry, but the only loser is someone who writes an anonymous comment that makes no sense.

Besides, we are not looking for approval from you or the town board.

Anonymous said...

If this comment is directed to me you are mistaken. I withdrew from consideration for the library trustee position before the vote was taken of my own free will. I then clearly endorsed Mr Flemma. I did this because Mr Flemma was chosen by the people of New Hartford to serve on their Library Board. I made it clear to the Town Board that I would like to be considered for next year.

Cathy, if possible, please post an update and recap from last night's TB meeting

Joseph. Bolton

Anonymous said...

Remember the step up to the plate comment. It still applies. All talk.

New Hartford, NY Online said...

Anonymous said...
Remember the step up to the plate comment. It still applies. All talk.

February 18, 2013 at 6:23:00 PM EST

Not sure what you mean...Somebody get up on the wrong side of the bed?

Anonymous said...

You know. Let the people who read this garbage understand you are all talk. You pushed hard to get people to help get care packs to our troops and never attended a meeting or lifted a finger. The higher power is looking since you're such a church guy don't try to deny it.

New Hartford, NY Online said...

Anonymous said...
You know. Let the people who read this garbage understand you are all talk. You pushed hard to get people to help get care packs to our troops and never attended a meeting or lifted a finger. The higher power is looking since you're such a church guy don't try to deny it.

March 18, 2013 at 7:30:00 PM EST


At first we weren't going to post your comment...obviously you have an ax to grind.

But upon reflection, we decided that if you want to show your ignorance, we might as well let you.

By the way, the only "garbage" on this blog, is written by gutless people who choose to attack someone anonymously.

Have a nice life!